Tina, I'm glad that the information interests you, and that you've had a personal experience with what I am suggesting. I'll email you the outline for Chapter 7, that I use. Keep in mind, that what you're doing with the information is simply to present it to the alcoholic... and let the alcoholic process the information and make their own decision.
Bill Wilson was a master salesman. In looking at how he arranged the information in the Big Book, it's obvious that he was very methodical in his strategy to produce a certain result. He knew the results that he desired to achieve... and then came up with a plan that matched his strategy.
The entire Big Book is a presentation, to present the formula for the "experience" of the 12 Steps.
Just as the 12 Steps are arranged in a specific order (and numbered) to produce a specific result: "a spiritual awakening" (the equivalent of the "conversion experience"... as religion would refer to it... or "psychic change", as Dr. Silkworth refers to it) The Big Book is arranged in a specific order as the presentation part of the formula.
When Bill was still in Towns' Hospital, on his last visit as a patient, where he had his great "white flash" experience... he had Ebby T., bring him a copy of William James, book, Varieties of Religious Experience." Bill read the information that William James had written regarding the "conversion experience." Bill noticed that the formula in James book matched the formula that the Oxford Groups were using to produce their "conversion experience."
Bill also had the information about Roland H., who had been treated, by Dr. Carl Jung, in Switzerland. Dr. Jung was trying to produce a "religious experience" in Roland H., but wasn't aware yet, of the formula to produce it. Dr. Jung had been researching religious movements in an effort to discover the formula to produce the "conversion experience". Jung had the formula all along... but didn't realize that he had it. Jung, used the formula on Roland H., without being aware that he had used it. This is why Bill, later, began to recognize Dr. Jung, as one of the actual "founders" of the Alcoholics Anonymous program of recovery... and Bill began his intense communication with Dr. Jung.
When I was about five years sober, in one of those "Gift of Desperation" experiences... I was doing another very intense Fourth Step process because of the pain and desperation. During that inventory, I remembered a Christian-flavored "religious experience" that I had in 1972. Later, after the pain and desperation had been removed as a results of applying the 12 Steps on the problem, I reviewed my inventory notes about it. The item that caught my attention was remembering that I had experienced the "conversion experience"... of the same type that was being produced by the Oxford Groups.
I had previously studied theology and I was aware that there was a formula to produce "conversion." The conversion experience that I had, in 1972, produced the same results that the Oxford Groups formula produced... there was an "immediate release" from alcoholism and drug addiction. My obsession to drink alcohol and use drugs had been removed.
My father, who was a minister, had used the formula on me, without him knowing that there was a formula. I accepted and used the formula without knowledge of the formula. And, the formula worked! I experienced the transformation in psyche and the personality change that is necessary to recover.
The one item of the formula that the Oxford Groups didn't have... in regards to the alcoholic... was the information on alcoholism. (Thus, our First Step was added to the formula, "Powerless over alcohol"). The formula that was used on me in 1972, also lacked the information on alcoholism. (That I could not safely use alcohol in any form whatsoever).
In studying AA History, I can see that Dr. Silkworth had the information about the problem (alcoholism) and Dr. Jung, had the information on the solution to treat it (spiritual conversion) the Oxford Groups had the formula to produce the spiritual experience.
Bill Wilson, received the information from Ebby, who had received the information from Roland H., who had received the information from Dr. Jung,... that the only known and recorded solution to treat alcoholism, would be through a "religious experience" that would produce a change in the psyche.
Ebby "got the religious experience" through the Oxford Groups, and carried the message, with the formula to Bill Wilson.
Dr. Silkworth had the information on alcoholism, and relayed the information (carried the message) to Bill Wilson.
Bill Wilson, had the spiritual experience in Townsâ€™ Hospital, while he was a patient of Dr. Silkworth... Bill, began to question his sanity, in regards to the spiritual experience. So he had Ebby bring him William James book, Varieties of Religious Experience, and the book confirmed to Bill, that there was logic and validity in what had happened to him, regarding his "white flash" experience! Bill, knew that the experience was real. He knew he had received the "release" from the obsession to drink. And, this is where Bill, got the idea, that even though he had received the "release from the obsession" to drink... the insanity to drink would return... if he did not carry this message to other alcoholics. (What has now become our Step 12).
After my spiritual experience in 1972, after about six months sober, I had been carrying the message of "religious experience" through a religious oriented job that I had, working in a rescue mission in Los Angeles. My religious beliefs kept me from drinking at that time. One day, my boss, the director of the Rescue Mission, reached into a drawer of his desk, pulled out a bottle of whiskey, and set up two glasses. One for me and one for him.
My experience was, I "recoiled from it, as though it were a hot flame." (I was having the same experience that Bill wrote about on page 84-85, even though I had never read the Big Book!) And, I said to my boss, "Should we be doing this? Isn't our body the temple of God?" And, he replied "Well, if you have a drinking problem, you shouldn't drink. I used to be an alcoholic... and I used to be a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, but after I got saved (religious experience) I'm no longer alcoholic. When God makes you whole, he does a thorough job, we are now new creatures in Christ, and not alcoholic anymore! Besides... Jesus did turn water into wine didn't he?" I still refused the drink.
About two weeks later, in the hot afternoon sun, walking the streets and alleys of skidrow in Los Angeles, trying to help homeless drunks... the idea suddenly came into my mind that "Gee, a cold beer sure would taste good right now." I was happy, saved and free!!! I wasn't thinking about "changing the way that I felt"... it was the "taste" that I desired!
Later that day, I bought a can of beer and drank it. Nothing extraordinary happened. About two weeks later... I bought another can of beer, and drank it on my drive home. Nothing extraordinary happened. A week or so after that... about all that I can remember, is that after I had got home... I got in an argument with my wife. It had been a bad day for me. I think I walked over to a grocery store to buy a quart of beer. I wasn't going to drink the whole quart... it was just cheaper to buy a quart than the cost of two cans... even though all I wanted, was to drink one glass of beer. (The alcoholic insanity).
The next thing I remember... was, that I had smashed up some of our furniture... and then I was sleeping on the bed, face down... and the next thing I knew was that LAPD Swat Team (about 15 officers) were on top of me with shotguns shoved into every part of my body... while they cuffed me! When they took me outside the apartment, there must have been twenty police cars, police dogs, and a helicopter above me! I still donâ€™t know what I did that got them that upset with me!
Now, that's what I got out of a quart of beer! Beer was controlled drinking for me! Can you now imagine the kinds of trouble I used to get in, when I was drinking a quart of vodka everyday?
In December of 1985, I landed in AA. I heard the message about "alcoholism" and couldn't accept it. I didn't have enough valid and logical information to convince me... that I was alcoholic! And, I heard of AA's solution... which sounded like "God" to me! And, I said "No thank you! Been there, done that, and I don't want to see another SWAT Team!"
So, in May 1986, a brilliant thought came into my mind... this time, it will be different... I will not buy a can of beer for me... I'm a sober member of AA... I will buy a can of beer for her! She is not alcoholic and she's not in AA! So, it's okay for her to drink! I will enjoy the effects of her drink, without me drinking, because she will act better than sheâ€™s been acting! Well... you know the rest of the story.
Above, when I mentioned about Bill being a Master Salesman, and the Big Book being laid out in a precise way, to produce a precise result... here are a couple of the clues that got me to first start looking at it this way...
I'll be referring to the Big Book, 3rd Edition, and the Original Manuscript for the Big Book.
BB: page XXX, Dr.â€™s Opinion "However, he did become "sold"
on the ideas contained in this book. He has not had a drink for more than three years. I see him now and then and he is as fine a specimen of manhood as one could wish to meet.
I earnestly advise every alcoholic to read this book through, and though perhaps he came to scoff, he may remain to pray. "
Original MS: "We do not like to brand any individual as an alcoholic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it. .....It will be worth a bad case of jitters if you get thoroughly sold on the idea
that you are a candidate for Alcoholics Anonymous!....."
BB, page 31-32: "We do not like to brand any individual as an alcoholic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it. It will be worth a bad case of jitters if you get a full knowledge of your condition."
Note: The change in the last sentence. Any good salesman will tell you, that if you're going to sell something to somebody... don't tell them they are going to get sold! Just give them enough information... and you know the decision that they will make! They will "sell themselves." But, if they think "you are selling them"... they might puke on you!
One of the reasons that I use the 20 Questions, and the AMA Definition of Alcoholism on some 12 Step calls... is because it presents thorough information, and it isn't "my information". Therefore, if they "get sold on the information"... they "sold themselves on it!" And, the main idea is to give them enough information, that they will become interested enough... to read the Big Book... which is where they will find the rest of the information... to convince them that there is a problem, and there is a solution, and inform them of what the solution is, and how they can have it.
Another note from BB:
Original MS, in â€œHow it worksâ€